Monday, December 29, 2008

Ideas, from A to Z

I love the NYTimes' Year in Ideas series.

This year, their eighth alphabetized list in a row, included 53 ideas.

My faves:

Airbags for the elderly (to prevent injuries from falling, a motion detector vest inflated at the hips and neck)

The Biomechanical Energy Harvester (which attaches to a person's knee and collects energy as they walk)

The cloth car (basically just that, a model from BMW)

The dog-poop DNA bank (it's exactly what you think it's for — to ferret out non-pooper scoopers!)

Mini-cattle (more efficient than their heavier cousins)

Upside-down demolition (starting at the bottom and working their way up)

Vending machines for crows (okay, I haven't read this one yet, but it sounds interesting)

and, unfortunately,

Women in Power are Set up to Fail (Two British researchers found evidence of what they called "the glass cliff," an invisible form of prejudice in which people will only give women a position of power if there is a strong chance of failure. They say the idea also applies to minorities.)

Anyway, if you have a chance to give it a look, it's really fascinating. A little out there at times, but fascinating nonetheless.

1 comment:

polar donkey said...

At the White Males in Power meeting Friday, we discussed the research about the "glass cliff". At first we thought we must do damage control because our secret, super-successful gameplan since WWII had gotten out. Cooler heads prevailed though and we went with undermining its signifigance by juxapositioning stories about crow vending machines, cloth cars, and dog-poop. The results so far have been pretty good.